JarJar Braybrams wants a third Cloverfield movie. If the second (loosely connected) movie is as enjoyable for me as the first one, the I’m all aboard. Give me a weird mythos populating somewhat individual entrances into the franchise, and I’ll be fine. Overjoyed, even. Well, not overjoyed. Joyed.
Out of all the people I know, I’m the one that enjoyed Cloverfield the most. I’m an easy mark for found footage, monsters, and attractive people being gutted and harvested to grow Monsters. So I’m understandably excited for this spiritual spin-off.
Wait, what the fuck? Abrams and his Monster Squad have filmed a “sequel” to Cloverfield, and none of us were any the wiser? Oh, J.J. But, hey. I’m excited.
[Caff Note: With CiTW dropping this weekend, there’s bound to be spoilers discussion in the comments. I warned you, fools!]
You don’t need to be a fan of Joss Whedon – or, a Whedonite as his diehards are terribly named – to know that his output is wildly smart. The man knows how to play with genre tropes without rubbing how clever he is in our face. Nevertheless, after hearing repeatedly about how innovative The Cabin in the Woods is, I was afraid that it was going to be overly self-conscious like the Scream series and be a massive wink and nudge at how clever Whedon and director Drew Goddard are. Thankfully that’s not the case and Cabin manages to be immensely entertaining without any third act twists. From the first frame Whedon and Goddard slowly feed us information so by the end, you don’t feel duped by a left field twist.
[face of a franchise presents two individuals that’ve fulfilled the same role. your task — choose the better of the two and defend your choice in the rancor pit that is the comments section]
Monsters kick ass.
Since the dawn of narrative itself, we have been absolutely obsessed with monsters. These grotesque aberrations of death and doom have served as metaphors, representations of the tests of will that the human spirit must endure. The talking snake in the garden paradise is actually the ever-present temptation to do wrong. The giant fire-breathing dragon is a warning against the dangers of hubris. The reanimated corpse-man is the reminder that, for better or worse, we will be remembered by our work.
Once again, monsters kick ass.
So when cinema came around, blessing us with the awe-inspiring combination of moving-pictures and sounds, it was only natural that monsters followed suit. This new medium enabled the monster-metaphors to be pushed even further, inducing more fear and provoking more thought than previously possible. The horrors were no longer confined to the breathy whispers of epic poems or the staid declarations of prose, but could now run as free as the imagination itself.
Unfettered, movies figured out the exact type of behemoth that horrifies, thrills, inspires, excites, and shocks more than any other. Ghosts and wolfmen and vampires and trolls might be scary, but they pale in comparison to the champion. `Cause at the end of the day, ain’t nothin’ better at conjuring up cold sweats and death-screams than this juggernaut:
The city-rockin’ monster.
In the nearly hundred years of cinema history we’ve accumulated, there’s been no scarcity of city-razin’ beasts. Truthfully, most of ’em turned out to be more sizzle than steak, and a select few terrified us beyond the capacity for rational thought. But two of these metropolitan menaces have stood the test of time, and as such now must battle for the title of most formidable city-rockin’ monster!
The combatants are, of course, Godzilla and King Kong.